Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke has hailed today as a milestone on the journey towards a new hospital for Cowra.

The NSW Budget confirmed that $70.2 million for a transformed hospital is locked in to the Budget Papers, with construction to commence prior to 2023.

Ms Cooke said she is looking forward to tracking progress of the hospital project as it gathers momentum.

“This is such an exciting moment, with the hospital appearing in the Budget papers for the first time.

“This is a huge result for the Cowra community, and I am so excited to witness how this massive and much-deserved undertaking takes shape.

“There is so much planning, consultation and listening which will need to take place before as much as a screwdriver is put to use, and it’s vital that all the t’s are crossed and i’s dotted.

“This Budget announcement is the first milestone on what will be a lengthy journey, and I’m delighted to have Cowra Shire Council and the Western NSW Local Health District on the journey with us.”

Ms Cooke said this Budget announcement is the result of a lot of hard work by a lot of people, backed by the NSW Government’s strong economic management.

“This hospital project is one of 32 health infrastructure projects taking place across NSW with a budget of $10.1 billion over four years.

“The community deserves the credit for this outstanding result and now it’s my job to continue working with them and NSW Health to continue the planning process.

Ms Cooke said the redevelopment of Cowra Hospital would mean residents could receive top-class medical treatment in their home town.

“There’s no doubt that new and upgraded hospitals help dramatically in attracting and retaining quality medical staff, but it’s the local patients who will notice the most difference and that’s what this project is all about – local people.”

The news from today’s Budget comes on the back of an announcement by Ms Cooke and Health Minister Brad Hazzard at Cowra Hospital in February.